Dear Weasley Family and Friends,
Well I guess you don't ever know what you have until its gone. This is the first week I didn't get a weekly email from Mom! Is she on Trek? Did Lori have her baby? I feel out of the loop here! But all things aside, I miss those emails! I am anxious to hear how things are going with Lori & Baby, and to know how trek is going. Its always weird to think about how your lives are all still going on. I mean mine is too, but I feel like so much more goes on in your lives. Maybe its just because I am living mine?
It was another great week in Sarpsborg. The weather is BEAUTIFUL! Man, the winter is worth it only because you get to experience the Spring, Summer, and Falls here. There really is nothing like it! We always joke that our idea of pretty is now all messed up because we have lived in Norway so long. This place is gorgeous. Its more than a redeeming quality, and good thing because I think otherwise we would all go crazy!
Its always crazy how fast the months go. As June started I thought back to last June. Now that I've been in the land over a year I can actually think back to where I was a year ago. At this time I was in Skien, in a threesome with Thurgood & Landry wondering how I was ever going to make it another 16 months. Now I'm with Sister McArthur in Sarpsborg thinking about how I only have 4 months left. Its crazy! Sometimes you get these small glimpses of seeing how far you have come. The change is so slow that it kinda just creeps up on you. Every once in awhile though I will be in a teach and I will just get this thought, "You just gave a hour lesson in complete Norwegian." And I'm like woah that's weird. It never really becomes normal to speak another language. I gave a talk yesterday in church, and the thrill and nerves never go away. And each time I walk away and think "How did that happen?"
My mission has taught me a lot about humility. One of my favorite quotes about humility is "Being humble is not about thinking less of yourself, but thinking less about yourself." Each day I wake up and I think "How the heck am I going to get through this day and be all that I need to be and do all that I need to do?" And each day the Lord shows me how merciful he is to his children. I have come to see that the strength I have and the qualities and skills I have learned come from God. I think that that is such an unique thing about a mission, it shows you how much God's hand is in your life. For me I look back on this last 14 months and I'm amazed. I had no idea that God could do so much with me. I didn't know I could learn another language, or find some of my truest friends, or help someone come back to the gospel, or help someone learn that God is real, but because of God I have been able to. I guess its just an overwhelming thought. Our weaknesses really can be overcome, and through Heavenly Father and the Atonement we can become who we were always meant to become.
If I had to pick a scripture to describe my mission it would be 1 Nephi 1:20 "I, [Louci], will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance." I have seen more than anything that God loves his children and He is willing to do anything to help them to be happy. Miracles are everywhere.
Funny Conversations Between Companions
Me: He looks like a total worker man.
McA: WHAT? He looks like a pole worker man?!
Me: Do you know who I wish was here right now? Gusty..
McA: Me too. I would really like to see him again.
Me: 3 weeks...
McA: Yeah, but I would like to lose weight before that so that he will still think I'm beautiful...
McA: I don't get it. If the sun is set, how is there still light?
Me: Well... technically the sun never sets, right? The Earth just keeps turning.
McA: Sunsets are not real. It is a sunset, it is an earth set.
30 Days of Service Continues!!!
We are running out of ideas and members to visit!! We need new ones!!
Day 14: We had the next door neighbor girls help McA die her hair!
Day 15: We called Sister Johnson, our STL, and left her a message about the things we love about her
Day 16: We complimented people on the street
Day 17: We made District lunch for everyone
Day 18: We gave Banana Bread to the office couple & Aps
Day 19: We had a service day to ourselves
Day 20: I talked in church & McA translated for the English speakers
Let the creativity continue....
Like I said it was a good week last week. On Wednesday night we spent the evening with the Young Women. They made us dinner and then we were asked to share why we came on a mission. I showed them my mission call opening video, which I hadn't seen forever. I started crying watching it again. Man! It was just the craziest thing. Coming on a mission was so hard for me, but when I opened my call and read that I was going to Norway I knew without a doubt that it was the right place for me. Its funny because on the days that you aren't sure why you came or if it was right, someone always asks you to tell your story and then you get to remember all over again the joy of coming. It was good! The next day I got a call from the bishopric and they asked me to speak on the same subject. I guess that's what happens when one of the YW's leaders is married to the second counselor! But it was good to talk. Always need the practice, right?
Torunn stopped by for church and to spend some time down here, on her way back to T-Heim. That was really fun!! Every time I see Tor and she is doing well, it reminds me of how worth missionary work is. I guess just because I put so much of myself into helping her and so seeing her so happy just makes me happy. There really isn't anything like the joy that comes from missionary work. And you find some of your best friends. Its crazy!
Um... okay. Norway is crazy. They are really BIG on car saftey. So here we are driving and we get pulled over with all these other cars so that they can check them. So first they come up to us and ask us for our registration. Okay. I don't even know what that is in America, so I'm not going to know anything about what it is in Norway. We were looking though everything and all we could find was old ones. He is like "Is this our car?" And we are like "Um... No..." So we give the APs a call. We are on the phone with Jonesy and we are just like where is it?!! And then we found it and we pretty much hang up the phone. I think they thought that we were dead or something, but the man needed to talk to us. He checks everything on the registration and on McAs licence and then he comes back and asks her to step outside of the car. We were both freaking out! Then he takes her to the wheel and shows her how something is wrong with it and takes a million years to explain something about something that I don't remember because I don't do car stuff, to her. So then she gets back in and he looks in the back and says "Excuse me, but do you know how much your purse weighs?" She thinks and says "There isn't much in it..." then he says "Well did you know that if your purse weighs .5 kilos that if you get in a accident or have to make a sudden stop that it can then weigh up to 30 kilos." And then he made us move everything from our back seat off of it. When we finally were done and had called Jones to inform them that we weren't dead, we looked at each other and died laughing. We definitely won't be putting our stuff back there anymore!
I hope you are all doing well! I love you guys to death! Keep me posted on the baby!!!
Keep it real. Keep it classy. And may the odds be ever in your favor.